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Pairs of schools, colleges and universities, especially when they are close to each other either geographically or in their areas of specialization, often establish a college rivalry with each other over the years. This rivalry can extend to both academics and athletics, the latter being typically better known to the general public. These schools place an added emphasis on emerging victorious in any event that includes their rival. This may include the creation of a special trophy or other commemoration of the event. While many of these rivalries have arisen spontaneously, some have been created by college officials in efforts to sell more tickets and support their programs.
Definition of a sports rivalry
Rivalries traverse many different fields within society. A rivalry develops from the product of competition and ritualism between different parties. A rivalry is defined as "a perceptual categorizing process in which actors identify which states are sufficiently threatening competitors". Ritualism is "a series of ... iterated acts or performances that are ... famous in terms 'not entirely encoded by the performer'; that is, they are imbued by meanings external to the performer". Everyone that is part of the sports event in some capacity becomes a part of the ritualism. Teams get together before the game to warm up, coaches shake hands with each other, captains have a determinant of who gets the ball first, everyone stands during the national anthem, the fans sit in specific areas, they make certain gestures with their hands throughout the game, they wear specific gear that is associated with the team, and they have the same post-game practices every game of every season of every year. It is through this consistency of playing the same teams yearly that "these rivalries have shown remarkable staying power". Specifically, it is society's drive to disrupt these original rituals that start rivalries. Horst Helle says, "society needs a particular quantitative relationship of harmony and disharmony, association and competition, favour and disfavour, in order to take shape in a specific way". Society is drawn to this in sports because this is a principal characteristic in everyday life, which can be seen in historic religious rivalries, such as the contemporary example of sectarianism in Glasgow. Within an area, differences between two types of people can drive the start of a rivalry. Competition and support keep the rivalry going.
In sports, competition tests who has better skill and ability at the time of the game through play. Many rivalries persist because the competition is between two teams that have similar abilities. Spectators gravitate towards competitive rivalries because they are interesting to watch and unpredictable. Society follows competitions because competitions influence "the unity of society". Being loyal to one team in a rivalry brings a sense of belonging to a community of supporters that are hoping that the team they are rooting for wins. The fans of the two different teams do not sit next to each other because this disrupts the community. In a similar way, competition displays an indirect way of fighting. Society does not condone direct fighting as a way of getting something so this is the most passive aggressive way of fighting. Because this is an acceptable practice, there are many supporters of competition as they fuel a way for the people to participate in a rivalry without the consequences of fighting. However, when the competition is not enough in sports and the tensions are high fighting does ensue.
Important contributors that fuel a rivalry
An important precursor to having a rivalry is having intense competitive play between two sports teams within the ritualistic structure of the game. A competition is "a form of struggle fought by means of objective performances, to the advantage of a third [party]", which in sports is driven by the team dynamic, and external outlets such as the fans and the media. These external outlets give rivalries more distinctive importance. An example of a rivalry that embodies this is the Yankees–Red Sox rivalry.
The team dynamic
In such sports as basketball and football there is a stress on the importance of teamwork. This is so because the team is a smaller society that needs to function properly. This means that they need good communication and get necessary goals accomplished for the team. Because of this, the individual on the team is seen as less important than the group as everyone works toward the goal of making the group the best it can possibly be. Players do this "in the form of obedience to authority, group loyalty, and the willingness to sacrifice for the good of the group."
The spectators, also known as fans, of sporting events are the largest population associated with the event. Fans exhibit "intangible feelings of pride, solidarity, and pleasure" for a particular team and brand loyalty, which means that they "heavily identify[y] with a particular team or university and have shown that the self-esteem of these ardent fans can be affected by their team's success in competition". This is important in rivalries because fans can determine the outcome of the game and the overall mood throughout the game. The fans have a lot of power because of this fact and therefore possess indirect power and determination on the outcome of the game.
The media connect the team, with the fans and the rest of the world. "The media do[es not] 'tell it like it is.' Rather, they tell it in a way that supports the interests of those who benefit from cultural commitments to competition, productivity, and material success." This is known as consumerism because the media influences society's emotions to think of the rivalries in a way that will get people to be as passionate about the game as they want to be. It is spectators' enjoyment of sports and the associated rivalries that drive media sport consumption.
Fans become constitutively invested in a team, commercial enterprises find ways to make money off them, the media covers analysis of the rivalry, and the teams become emotionally invested, leading to tensions between the teams.
Each sport has an annual intercollegiate showdown between the two prestigious schools, known as the "Intercol". These are considered by the two colleges to be the most important games of the season, and the fiercely fought matches draw big crowds of students and old scholars from both schools. The Intercols have been played for over 100 years. The Cricket Intercollegiate match has been competed in since 1878. According to Richard Sproull this is "the oldest unbroken annual contest in the history of cricket" (Weekend Australian 5/6 December 1992). For the sport of rowing, the intercol is competed during South Australia's 'Head of the River Regatta', on the second to last Saturday of the first school term, with one of the two school's taking out the statewide title nearly every year since its beginning.
In 1991, the following legend was printed in the Centennial Rugby Programme, dubbed – "The Battle of The Colours", for the 100th anniversary of the annual Nudgee vs Terrace rugby match. The legend has it that the two St Joseph's, who both wore the Christian Brothers traditional Blue and White, played off in a Rugby game to decide who would keep the prestigious colours. As the story goes Nudgee won the match seeing them keep the colours with Gregory Terrace changing to the now famed Red and Black. This fierce rivalry has continued ever since in every sport yet Rugby continues to stand head and shoulders above the rest, with crowds of up to 10 000 attending First XV fixtures. As two of the biggest Rugby schools in Australia the schools also compete for the St Joseph's Cup.
Intercollege Sport has been played between Jane Franklin Hall, Christ College and St. John Fisher College for many years, with many sports played, most importantly Rugby, Cricket and Australian Rules football. These matches are fiercely contested, indeed playing a part in the winning Rugby side is considered the crowning achievement in ones time at college. Jane Franklin Hall has had the edge in sporting prowess over the years in most sports – with its winning streak in Soccer extending back to the mid 1980s, for example – apart from Rugby which is very tightly contested, with Christ College coming out the victor more often over recent years. Each year, the colleges compete for the Intercollege Cup, which is decided based on points earned from sporting results. Each sport is allocated various points for first, second and third, and weighted to reward the college that wins the more prestigious sports of Rugby, Football and Cricket, with Rugby given the highest weighting.
- Université catholique de Louvain and Université Libre de Bruxelles.
- Katholieke Universiteit Leuven and Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
Rivalry started in the 1830s when the Free University of Brussels was established as a non-religious and freethinking university whereas the old Catholic University of Leuven – refounded in 1835 – remained under Church control. The rivalry survived the division of the two original foundations into separate Dutch-speaking and French-speaking establishments, in 1968 and 1970 respectively. Nowadays control of the Church over the two catholic universities has diminished and they are largely pluralist, accepting students and professors from all religions and backgrounds, but the rivalry with the two secular universities in Brussels continues. This rivalry finds expression mainly among academics and traditional student activities as intercollegiate sports remain largely developed in Belgium.
These two schools are cross-city rivals in Ottawa, Ontario and have historically had the largest football rivalry in the country. The Carleton Ravens and the Ottawa Gee-Gees played the annual Panda Game from 1955 to 1998, which consistently garnered a national spotlight and was renowned for its size and popularity. The Panda Game was absent for 15 years after Carleton shut down their football program, but was revived in 2013 when Carleton restarted their football program.
The rivalry is also on display on the basketball court, where both schools' teams are among the best in Canada.
These two universities have one of the oldest rivalries in Canada. Western, located in London, Ontario and Queen's, located in Kingston, Ontario are two of the older schools in Ontario and are both notable academic institutions. The rivalry is ever present in Football when the two schools meet every year.
- University of Western Ontario and Wilfrid Laurier University
- University of Toronto, York University, and Ryerson University
Historically, Toronto and York compete at the Annual Red & Blue Bowl Football Game, which attracts alumni and many students from both universities. Other rivalries exist in hockey, rowing and academics, which both score quite well. All three schools are located in the city of Toronto
- University of Winnipeg and University of Manitoba
- Queen's University and McGill University
- Queen's University and Royal Military College of Canada
- Wilfrid Laurier University and University of Waterloo
- Georgian College and Durham College
- Georgian College and Sheridan College
- Peking University and Tsinghua University: Known as the Pekhua Rivalry, they are the two best universities in mainland China, and they are located next to each other.
- Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Fudan University: These two Shanghai-based reputable universities frequently participate in a variety of joint sports competitions, including bicycle racing, track and field, soccer, and dragon boat racing.
- Sichuan University and Chongqing University: Chengdu, the home of Sichuan University, and Chongqing, the home of Chongqing University, are rival cities in southwestern China due to historical and geographic reasons, and the relationship between these two cities leads to the rivalry between these two flagship universities of their areas (Similar to Michigan-Ohio State rivalry).
- Zhejiang University and Nanjing University: Two flagships in Yangtze River's delta area.
- Nankai University and Tianjin University: Two best schools in the city of Tianjin.
- Hefei University of Technology and University of Science and Technology of China: Rivals for historical reasons.
- Sichuan International Studies University and Southwest University of Political Science & Law
- Huazhong University of Science and Technology and Wuhan University
- South China University of Technology and Sun Yat-Sen University
- Nanjing University and Southeast University
- Renmin University and Peking University
Business Schools: ESSEC Business School and HEC Paris have been fierce rivals with HEC topping most rankings and ESSEC often coming second. However, ESSEC has long been considered an entrepreneurial powerhouse, more dynamic and open-minded than HEC, whilst the latter has constantly been accused of snobbish attitudes due to the elitist mindset of its student population. Whether either assumptions are true or false, those two schools have produced the elite of French business circles, alongside the other "Parisian" business school ESCP Europe, which is usually ranked third in France.
Engineering Schools: The famous engineering schools, such as ParisTech members, usually compete in national sports tournaments, but also in technological competitions such as the French Robotics Cup or the Mash Marathon. In these situations some of the schools chose to form alliances, like Supélec and Arts et Métiers ParisTech that build common robots.
Other Schools: The "Critérium" of the Institut d'études politiques (IEP) is an annual multi-sport competition between the 9 IEPs. It is traditionally held on the last weekend of March with the host city changing every year. It is the occasion for the IEPs located in French regions to challenge the more prestigious IEP Paris (known as "Sciences Po"). A final opposing Paris to, for example, Lyon would see students from all over France cheering for Lyon, especially with the anthem "Province unie, tous contre Paris !" ("Province united, all against Paris !", the "province" being a somewhat pejorative term used to designate any place in France outside of Paris). The Paris students would respond by boasting their status as a Grande école and élite institution.
- Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, and Indian Institute of Management Bangalore
- St. Stephen's College, Delhi, and Hindu College, University of Delhi
- Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, and Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode
- SASTRA University, Thanjavur and National Institute of Technology, Trichy, Trichy
- National Law School of India University, Bangalore, and NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad.
- OP Jindal Global University, Sonepat and Ashoka University, Sonepat
- Christ (Deemed to be University) and St Joseph's College, Bangalore
- University of Pisa and University of Pavia – the annual Pisa-Pavia Regatta, the second oldest in Europe after the Oxford Cambridge boat race.
- Scuola Normale Superiore and Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa
- Ghislieri College and Borromeo College, Pavia
- Kyoto University and Tokyo University – dating back to 1869, the oldest in the country; primarily an academic rivalry since the 1950s.
- Keio University and Waseda University – known as Soukeisen, an athletic rivalry in baseball, rugby, football (soccer) and rowing.
- Meiji University and Waseda University – known as Soumeisen, baseball and rugby football rivalry.
- Meiji University and Keio University – known as Keimeisen, baseball and rugby football rivalry.
- Kansai University and Kwansei Gakuin University – known as Kankansen, baseball and rugby football rivalry.
- Ritsumeikan University and Doshisha University – known as Doritsusen, baseball and rugby football rivalry.
- Nanzan University and Sophia University – known as Jōnan-sen.
- Fukuoka University and Seinan Gakuin University – known as Seifukusen, baseball rivalry.
- Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and Instituto Politécnico Nacional
- Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León and Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey
- Universidad Iberoamericana and Universidad Anahuac
- Universidad Autónoma de Baja California and Instituto Tecnológico de Tijuana
University Athletic Association of the Philippines
- Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University (Ateneo–La Salle rivalry)
– UAAP Men's Basketball, started in NCAA Men's Basketball, but developed in the UAAP.
- Far Eastern University and University of the East (The Battle of the East)
– UAAP Men's Basketball
- De La Salle University and University of Santo Tomas (La Salle–UST rivalry)
– UAAP Women's Volleyball, UAAP Men's Basketball, UAAP Men's and Women's Tennis
- University of the Philippines and University of Santo Tomas (UP–UST rivalry)
National Collegiate Athletic Association (Philippines)
- Current rivalries
- San Beda College and Colegio de San Juan de Letran (San Beda–Letran rivalry)
– NCAA Men's Basketball
- Colegio de San Juan de Letran and Mapúa Institute of Technology (The "new" Battle of Intramuros)
– NCAA Men's Basketball
– NCAA Cheerdance Competition
- San Sebastian College – Recoletos and Colegio de San Juan de Letran (San Sebastian–Letran rivalry)
– NCAA Men's Basketball
- San Sebastian College – Recoletos and José Rizal University
NCAA Men's Basketball
- De La Salle–College of Saint Benilde and San Beda College
– NCAA Soccer
- San Sebastian College – Recoletos and San Beda College
– NCAA Men's Basketball
- University of Perpetual Help System DALTA and San Beda College
– NCAA Men's Basketball
- San Beda College and Colegio de San Juan de Letran (San Beda–Letran rivalry)
- Past rivalries
- Ateneo de Manila University and San Beda College
– previously in NCAA Men's Basketball.
- Ateneo de Manila and University of the Philippines Manila (The "old" Battle of Intramuros)
– previously in NCAA Men's Basketball
- Colegio de San Juan de Letran and De La Salle University
– previously NCAA Men's Basketball
- Mapúa Institute of Technology and San Beda College
– NCAA Juniors Basketball
- Ateneo de Manila University and San Beda College
- AMA Computer University and STI Colleges, NAASCU's cyber war.
- Sta. Clara Parish School and St. Mary's Academy (Tacla–SMA Rivalry) (Libertad, Pasay Rivalry)
- Sta. Clara Parish School and San Isidro Catholic School (PC–PRISA HS Division Basketball)
- Paco Catholic School and Pateros Catholic School (PCS Rivalry)
- Yonsei University and Korea University (See Yonsei–Korea (Korea-Yonsei) rivalry)
- KAIST and POSTECH
- Royal College, Colombo and S. Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia, the Royal–Thomian annual cricket match since 1879.
- See main article at Royal–Thomian rivalry
- Dharmaraja College, Kandy and Kingswood College, Kandy, the annual cricket encounter Battle of the Maroons since 1893
- Royal College, Colombo and Trinity College, Kandy for the annual Bradby Shield Encounter since 1920
- National Chiao Tung University and National Tsing Hua University, Mei-Chu Tournament.
- National Chung Cheng University, National Chung Hsing University, National Cheng Kung University and National Sun Yat-sen University
- National Taiwan University and National Chengchi University.
- Chulalongkorn University and Thammasat University, Chula–Thammasat Traditional Football Match
- Assumption College, Bangkok Christian College, Debsirin School and Suankularb Wittayalai School, Jaturamitr Samakkee Football Cup
- Middle East Technical University and Boğaziçi University
- Faculty of Law and Faculty of Political Sciences of Ankara University
-The two faculties are situated side by side. When İnek Bayramı (Literal meaning, The Cow Festival, idiomatic meaning: The Nerd festival), the traditional festival of the Faculty of Political Sciences is being celebrated, the booing from the Faculty of Law is also a long tradition.
Oxford and Cambridge have a rivalry which dates back to the 13th century; see Oxford and Cambridge rivalry, Blue (university sport), the Boat Race, The Varsity Game, The Varsity Match, the Rugby League Varsity Match, and the Ice Hockey Varsity Match. Colleges within each University are also known to nurture keen rivalries, such as that between Oriel College, Oxford and Pembroke College, Oxford, centred around rowing, that between Exeter College, Oxford and Jesus College, Oxford, both being directly opposite each other on Turl Street, or that between Brasenose College, Oxford and Lincoln College, Oxford, one of two pairs of "semi-detached" colleges in Oxbridge – the other being Balliol College and Trinity College in Broad Street, Oxford. Another keen rivalry is that between St Edmund Hall, Oxford, and the Queen's College, Oxford, dating back to the time when the Queen's College owned St Edmund Hall. In Cambridge, rivalries exist between St John's and Trinity, two of the richest colleges of the university and all of Oxbridge. Rivalries have also been established between Colleges in Oxford and Cambridge, such as that between Robinson College, Cambridge and St Catherine's College, Oxford.
University College London and King's College London have a rivalry that has been a part of London life for nearly two centuries. It can be traced to their foundation in the 1820s when King's College was established as an Anglican alternative to the secular University College. The third-oldest university in England debate between the two universities and other parties continues to this day.
King's College London and University of Bradford also have a departmental rivalry. King's College London's War Studies department faces Bradford University's Peace Studies department, in an annual football match for the 'Tolstoy Cup'. The rivalry between 'War' and 'Peace' studies teams is one of the great sporting rivalries, being featured at number four on the Financial Times list of "Great College Sports Rivalries".
Lancaster University and University of York have a rivalry which has lasted since the formation of the universities at similar times in the 1960s. There is an annual sports competition between the university named the Roses Tournament, which takes its name after the 15th Century civil war between the House of York and the House of Lancaster. The first event was held in 1965 and has been an annual tradition ever since.
Northumbria University and Newcastle University have a rivalry based upon the close geographical relationship attributed between both universities, with Northumbria University being situated extremely close to the older Newcastle University in Newcastle upon Tyne. In 1994 the Stan Calvert Cup was instituted as a multi-sport competition between the two universities; but in 2018 Newcastle University decided to withdraw from the cup for the foreseeable future.
University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University have a rivalry being the cities two principal universities with the battle for the 'varsity cup' taking place every year when over 1,000 students from both universities compete in over 15 different sports.
- Edinburgh Academy and Merchiston Castle School Since 1858 the oldest continuous rugby fixture in the world. As of 2008 Edinburgh Academy has produced 103 rugby internationalists and Merchiston 62. They compete annually for the Sesquicentenary Trophy.
- Eton College and Harrow School, an annual cricket match that has been held at Lord's Cricket Ground since 1805.
- Merchant Taylors' School and St. Paul's School, historical London rivalry that weakened when St. Paul's moved to Hammersmith and Merchant Taylors' moved to Moor Park.
- Merchant Taylors' School and Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School, geographically close (with both located in southern Hertfordshire): annual sports fixtures played, with cricket matches having been played at Lord's.
- Merchant Taylors' School and The Skinners' School, stemming from the fact that the two schools' parent livery companies alternate places in the City of London's order of precedence each year.
- The Perse School and The Leys School Annual matches in all sports. Until The Perse moved site in 1960 the two schools were situated about 500 metres apart, joined by Lensfield Road.
- Royal Grammar School Worcester and King's School, Worcester in the "Modus Cup".
- Westminster School and St. Paul's School
- Bablake School and King Henry VIII School, Coventry as sister schools have annual sporting competitions which culminate in the annual rugby match played at Butts Park.
- Maidstone Grammar School for Girls and Invicta Grammar School, Maidstone
- St. Paul's School and King's College School, primarily in rugby but also in other sports including football (soccer) and cricket.
- King's College School and Royal Grammar School, Guildford, primarily in rugby where they compete for the Hillers-Hutchison Shield.
- The King's School, Canterbury and King's College School, one of the oldest fixtures in each school's fixture list.
- Tonbridge School and Wellington College, more prominently in rugby, the rugby season finishes with the annual fixture between the two schools.
- Ravensbourne School, Bromley, Bishop Justus Church of England School and Ravens Wood School
- The Skinners' School and The Judd School, both founded by the Honorable Skinners' Company, rivalry in rugby and academia
- George Heriot's School and George Watsons College, Rivalry between schools extends back to the 1700s due to both schools being on opposite sides of Lauriston Road from each other. The rivalry was at a high during the mid 1800s with parties from both schools conducting raids on each other and a wave of "thefts, violence, mass riots and bullying". This violence and rivalry subsided with the relocating from Watson's and the change to both School becoming day schools rather than boarding. Today the rivalry extends only to the sports pitch although there is rumour of a raid in the 1970/80s of a group of Watsonian finding themselves in the Heriots cafeteria with several stink bombs.
- Epsom College and St John's School,Leatherhead, are have a rivalry in sports, especially rugby and hockey.
School rivalries are important in the United States, especially in intercollegiate sports. Rivalries within conferences are list below. Some rivalries, such as the Indiana–Kentucky rivalry, take place between two schools from different conferences.
The Caltech–MIT rivalry is unusual for both the geographic distance between the schools (their campuses are separated by about 2500 miles and are on opposite coasts of the United States) and the focus on elaborate pranks rather than sporting events.
- - Conference
- Florida State–miami rivalry
- Tobacco Road (Duke Blue Devils/NC State Wolfpack/North Carolina Tar Heels/Wake Forest Demon Deacons)
- Carolina–Duke rivalry
- Carolina–State rivalry
- Virginia–Virginia Tech rivalry
- South's Oldest Rivalry
- Syracuse University - Boston College
- - Nonconference
- - Conference
- Commonwealth Classic (Boston College vs UMass) – First played in 1905.
- Duke vs. Maryland
- Duke–Michigan men's basketball rivalry – First played in 1963.
- Kentucky-Louisville Rivalry (Louisville vs. Kentucky)
- Syracuse–UConn men's basketball rivalry
- - Conference
- Boston College vs. Syracuse – First played in 1924.
- Boston College vs. Virginia Tech – First played in 1993.
- Clemson–Georgia Tech football rivalry – First played in 1898.
- Clemson vs. Florida State – First played in 1970.
- Commonwealth Cup (Virginia vs. Virginia Tech) – First played in 1895, the trophy was created in 1996.
- Florida State vs Miami – First played in 1951.
- Jefferson–Eppes Trophy (Virginia vs. Florida State) – First played in 1992, trophy was created in 1995.
- Miami vs. Virginia Tech – First played in 1953.
- North Carolina–Wake Forest rivalry – The oldest rivalry in the state of North Carolina, first played in 1888.
- North Carolina–NC State football rivalry (NC State vs. North Carolina) – First played in 1894.
- NC State vs. Wake Forest – The ACC's longest continuously played rivalry, since 1910, first played in 1895.
- O'Rourke–McFadden Trophy (Clemson vs. Boston College) – First played in 1940, the trophy was first awarded in 2008.
- Pittsburgh–Syracuse football rivalry – First played in 1916.
- South's Oldest Rivalry (Virginia vs. North Carolina) – The ACC's and the South's oldest rivalry, first played in 1892.
- Textile Bowl (Clemson vs. NC State) – First played in 1899.
- Victory Bell (North Carolina–Duke) (North Carolina vs. Duke) – First played in 1888, the Victory Bell trophy was first awarded 1948.
- - NonConference
- Auburn–Clemson football rivalry – First played in 1899.
- Auburn–Georgia Tech football rivalry – First played in 1892.
- Backyard Brawl (Pittsburgh vs. West Virginia) – First played in 1895.
- Battle of Bristol (Tennessee vs. Virginia Tech) – First played in 1897, currently holds the record for most attended football game 156,990 in attendance at Bristol Motor Speedway. September 10, 2016
- Beltway Brawl (Maryland vs. Virginia) – First played in 1919.
- Boston College–Holy Cross football rivalry – First played in 1896.
- Boston College–UMass football rivalry – First played in 1899.
- Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate (Georgia Tech vs. Georgia) – First played in 1893.
- Clemson–Georgia football rivalry – First played in 1897.
- Clemson–South Carolina rivalry – First played in 1896.
- Florida–Florida State football rivalry – First played in 1958.
- Florida–Miami football rivalry – First played in 1938.
- Governor's Cup (Louisville vs. Kentucky) – First played in 1912, but the modern football rivalry did not begin until 1994. The 1994 meeting was the first between the teams in 70 years.
- Holy War (Boston College vs. Notre Dame) – First played in 1975.
- Miami–Nebraska football rivalry – First played in 1951, four national titles have been decided from bowl games between these teams.
- Penn State–Pittsburgh football rivalry – First played in 1893.
- Penn State–Syracuse football rivalry – First played in 1922.
- Syracuse–West Virginia football rivalry – First played in 1945.
- Virginia Tech–West Virginia football rivalry – First played in 1912.
America East rivalries
Basketball is typically the hot-button sport in the America East Conference, though most rivalries bridge across all sports. The most notable rivalries include:
- University at Albany and Binghamton University, also known as the I-88 Rivalry because of their geographic proximity.
- University at Albany and University of Vermont mostly in men's basketball, due to the successes these two teams have had in the 2000s.
- University at Albany and University of Maryland, Baltimore County mostly in women's volleyball and men's lacrosse due to their intense, post-season matches.
- University at Albany and Stony Brook University – Although the America East does not sponsor football, these schools have a long-standing rivalry in that sport, currently known as the Empire Clash. Since 2013, both have been football-only members of the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA).
- University of Hartford and University of Maryland, Baltimore County both men's and women's basketball.
- University of New Hampshire and University of Maine More notorious for its hockey rivalry, the Maine-New Hampshire rivalry bleeds into other sports as well. The schools' football rivalry is a conference clash in the CAA.
- Stony Brook University and University of Vermont mostly in men's basketball, due to the successes these two teams have had in the 2010s.
- - NonConference
- Albany–Siena rivalry first meeting was in 1940.
- Central Connecticut–Hartford rivalry a rivalry started in basketball is now starting to gain popularity in baseball.
Big East rivalries
The Big East Conference, founded as a basketball conference, is a league of 10 Division I schools, none of which play Division I Football Bowl Subdivision–level football. The conference, while centered in the northeast, is also geographically diverse, stretching from Nebraska to New England. Current rivalries include:
- Butler Bulldogs and Xavier Musketeers – among the most successful Division I men's basketball programs in the 21st century, the two schools were founding members of the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, and were also two of the three Midwestern schools invited to join the Big East at its relaunch in 2013.
- DePaul Blue Demons and Marquette Golden Eagles – Originally Division I independents, both joined Conference USA and the original Big East at the same time, and are among the "Catholic 7" that formed the current Big East after breaking away from the former members of the conference who all sponsored Division I Football Bowl Subdivision-level football. One of several sports rivalries involving teams from Chicago and Milwaukee, alongside the Brewers–Cubs rivalry and (by proxy) the Bears–Packers rivalry. The rivalry reached its zenith in the late 1970s, when both DePaul and Marquette were national powers. However, the rivalry has, as of late, heavily favored Marquette, with the Milwaukee school winning approximately four out of every five meetings since the early 1990s.
- Georgetown Hoyas and St. John's Red Storm — These two "Catholic 7" schools, neither of which plays Division I FBS football (Georgetown plays in Division I FCS, and St. John's has no football program), had their basketball teams rise to prominence in the 1980s, having numerous meetings that impacted the NCAA Championship as well as the Big East title. Both teams were known for their charismatic coaches, John Thompson at Georgetown and Lou Carnesecca at St. John's. Rivalry has declined in recent years. This rivalry has also influenced other sports, as the two schools' baseball teams opened Citi Field on March 29, 2009 with the third game of a three-game series that started at Georgetown. The Hoyas won the game, and the series.
- Georgetown–UConn men's basketball rivalry—The first game played between the two schools took place on December 22, 1958
- Georgetown Hoyas and Villanova Wildcats — These two Division I FCS football schools share an intense rivalry in basketball, stemming from Villanova's defeat of John Thompson's Hoya team in the 1985 NCAA championship game. The rivalry takes on a religious tone as Augustinian (Villanova) versus Jesuit (Georgetown). Jokes about the opposing orders fly back and forth during the week preceding Villanova-Georgetown. In recent years the rivalry has undergone somewhat of a revival, with both teams enjoying success in the regular season and recent NCAA tournaments. This rivalry continues in the reconfigured Big East.
- Providence Friars and Villanova Wildcats — The two smallest schools in the original Big East battle each year. The rivalry is also elevated by the Catholic orders which run the schools; Providence's Dominicans and Villanova's Augustinians.
- St. John's Red Storm and Seton Hall Pirates – Two local "Catholic 7" schools battle it out every year in basketball. New York vs New Jersey bragging rights are on the line as well as competing for many local basketball recruits in the area.
- - Nonconference
- Rutgers–UConn women's basketball rivalry–A rivalry that intensified after Tennessee stopped scheduling Rutgers in non–conference play.
- Tennessee–UConn women's basketball rivalry–The women's basketball rivalry between the University of Tennessee Lady Volunteers and the University of Connecticut Huskies is one of the fiercest rivalries in college basketball, and perhaps the only one to reach national consciousness out of the women's game.
Big Ten rivalries
Universities in the Big Ten Conference in the Midwest have more rivalries than Universities in the Southeast.
- University of Illinois vs Indiana University
- University of Illinois vs University of Iowa
- Indiana University vs Purdue University
- University of Michigan vs Michigan State University
- Indiana University and Michigan State University – Old Brass Spittoon
- Michigan State University and Pennsylvania State University – Land Grant Trophy
- Northwestern University and University of Illinois – Competed for the Sweet Sioux Tomahawk from 1945 through 2008. Because of NCAA rules regarding Native American imagery, the trophy has been retired, with the schools competing for the new Land of Lincoln Trophy from 2009 onward.
- Ohio State University and University of Illinois – Illibuck (a statue of a turtle)
- Ohio State University and Pennsylvania State University – There is no trophy here, but these teams play every year in the Big Ten. The first meeting between these two teams dates back to the early 1900s. Due to recent scandals with both programs, Ohio State vacated their 2010 victory due to the tattoo scandal.
- Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University, and University of Michigan – Creator's Trophy (Lacrosse) Winner of two games takes the trophy. Trophy stays where it is if all teams are all 1-1.
- Pennsylvania State University and Rutgers University – Friendship Cup (Lacrosse)
- Purdue University and Indiana University – Old Oaken Bucket (football), The Crimson & Gold Cup (all sports). Notably, Indiana–Purdue is the only "protected" cross-divisional game in Big Ten football since its 2014 expansion to 14 members. See Indiana–Purdue rivalry.
- University of Illinois and Purdue University – Purdue Cannon
- University of Illinois and University of Michigan – Illinois–Michigan football series - There is no trophy here, but the first meeting between these two teams dates back to 1898.
- University of Iowa and University of Minnesota – Floyd of Rosedale (a bronze statue of a pig)
- University of Iowa and University of Wisconsin – Heartland Trophy (a bronze statue of a bull)
- University of Iowa and University of Nebraska – Heroes Trophy
- University of Michigan and Ohio State University – ESPN calls the Michigan–Ohio State rivalry the greatest sports rivalry of the 20th century. According to legend, its history can be traced back to the Toledo War. The rivalry between the two schools is simply known as "The Game", no trophy is awarded to the winner of the game.
- University of Michigan and Michigan State University – Paul Bunyan Trophy
- University of Michigan and University of Minnesota – The Little Brown Jug
- University of Michigan and Pennsylvania State University – There is no trophy rivalry here, but the teams have been rivals since Penn State joined the Big Ten due to their similar football histories.
- University of Minnesota and Pennsylvania State University – Governor's Victory Bell
- University of Minnesota and University of Wisconsin – Paul Bunyan's Axe This is the oldest and most played rivalry in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision.
- University of Minnesota and University of Nebraska – $5 Bits of Broken Chair Trophy
Big 12 rivalries
Current rivalries in the Big 12 Conference include:
- Texas Tech University and Texas Christian University (TCU) – The TCU–Texas Tech football rivalry is one of the biggest rivalries in the Big 12. Both Athletic Directors have stated that they were in a rivalry. Every year these two teams play for the Saddle Trophy. Texas Tech and TCU are definitely each others biggest rivals making this one of the most prolific rivalries in college football. It has once again become an annual matchup as TCU has joined the Big 12 Conference with Texas Tech.
- Sunflower Showdown (Kansas University vs. Kansas State University) – The Sunflower Showdown includes all athletic events between the two schools. The Governor's Cup is awarded to the victor of the football game.
- Bedlam Series (University of Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State University) – The Bedlam Series encompasses all athletic contests between the two schools.
- Red River Rivalry (University of Oklahoma vs. University of Texas at Austin) – College football's Red River Rivalry. The two teams play annually at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, with the fans of each side divided by the 50-yard line. The "Golden Hat" trophy is awarded to the winner.
- University of Texas at Austin and Texas Tech University - Since 1996, the Chancellor's Spurs have been awarded to the annual winner of this football game.
- Chisholm Trail Rivalry (Kansas State University vs. University of Texas at Austin Since 1913, the Chisholm Trail Rivalry has been played between Texas and Kansas State, with the Kansas State Wildcats holding a one-game edge (10-9) over the Texas Longhorns.
Other current rivalries involving Big 12 schools include:
- Texas Christian University (TCU) and Southern Methodist University (SMU) – College football's Battle for the Iron Skillet is one of the most intense private school rivalries in the nation. Although this is now a non-conference rivalry, with TCU in the Big 12 and SMU in the American Athletic Conference, the football rivalry continues to this day.
- West Virginia University and University of Maryland – A traditional football "border war", dating back to 1919. The rivalry continued even though both schools have long been in separate conferences. (See also Maryland–West Virginia football rivalry.)
Former Big 12 rivalries that are now dormant due to conference realignment in the early 2010s include:
- Baylor University and Texas A&M University – College football's Battle of the Brazos. Ended for the time being when A&M moved to the Southeastern Conference (SEC) in 2012.
- Iowa State University and University of Missouri – From 1959 to 2011, the Telephone Trophy was awarded to the annual winner of this football game. The football rivalry ended when Missouri joined the SEC in 2012.
- University of Kansas and University of Missouri – The Border War includes all athletic events between the two schools. The rivalry ostensibly traces its roots to the 1850s, when skirmishes – widely known as "border wars" – between the two states marked the beginning of the Civil War. Before Missouri's departure for the SEC, this was the oldest continuous football rivalry west of the Mississippi, and the second oldest in Division I FBS history.
- University of Missouri and University of Nebraska – Before realignment, the Missouri–Nebraska football rivalry was the second-oldest football rivalry in the Big 12 Conference and third-oldest rivalry west of the Mississippi River. Nebraska's 2011 move to the Big Ten and Missouri's 2012 move to the SEC put an end to the rivalry.
- University of Oklahoma and University of Nebraska – This rivalry was once one of the most storied rivalries in the history of college football, highlighted by the 1971 "Game of the Century" between #1 Nebraska and #2 Oklahoma. However, the rivalry diminished somewhat after the creation of the Big 12 in 1996 placed the two teams in different divisions, meaning that the game was no longer played annually. It ended for the time being once Nebraska joined the Big Ten. The rivalry will resume temporarily when Oklahoma hosts Nebraska in 2021 and Nebraska hosts Oklahoma in 2022.
- University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University – The Lone Star Showdown involves all athletic contests between the two schools. A&M's move to the SEC ended the football version of the rivalry.
Colonial Athletic Association rivalries
Rivalries in the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) include:
- VCU–Old Dominion basketball rivalry is said to be one of the best rivalries in basketball in the mid-majors It is now an inter-conference rivalry after VCU's 2012 move to the Atlantic 10 Conference (A10).
- The College of William & Mary and University of Richmond. Football rivalry dates to 1898 and is named the Capital Cup.
- University of Delaware and Villanova University. Football rivalry dates to 1895 and is named the Battle of the Blue.
- George Mason University and James Madison University. Rivalry in Basketball. JMU has the all-time lead but Mason has won 22 out of the last 25 games. This is an inter-conference rivalry after Mason's 2013 move to the A10.
- Northeastern University and Hofstra University. Basketball team plays for the Frank Barone Trophy after an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond that had the winning football from an NU v HU game
Ivy League and service academy rivalries
- United States Naval Academy and Princeton University, a traditional rivalry seen now most evidently in Lightweight Rowing, compete annually for the Murtaugh Cup and Waterpolo where both schools commonly play each for the League Championship. Navy defeated Princeton for the 2009 and 2008 Championship.
- United States Military Academy and Yale University, the proximity of these two institutions and the success of their football programs earlier in the century led to a bitter rivalry.
- Columbia University and Fordham University; Two of New York City's three Division I FCS football programs compete annually for the Liberty Cup
- Cornell University and Colgate University, primarily in football and hockey. Colgate's sports teams were named the "Red Raiders" in response to Cornell's "Big Red". Colgate and Cornell have played 119 football games against one another and 127 hockey since 1958; Cornell leads both series.
- Cornell University and Harvard University, primarily a men's ice hockey rivalry
- Cornell University and Hobart College – one of the oldest rivalries in college lacrosse.
- Cornell University and Princeton University – men's lacrosse rivalry dating to 1922; the two school have won at least a share of 42 Ivy League titles; Princeton holds a 35-30-2 advantage in the all-time series.
- Cornell University and University of Pennsylvania – football rivalry dating to 1893; with 122 games, it is the 5th most played college football game. The only year Cornell and Penn did not play was in 1918. For a time played on Thanksgiving; since 1995, the winner has been awarded the Trustees Cup. Penn leads in the series 71-46-5. The Cornell-Penn series is the 2nd longest uninterrupted series played (since 1919).
- Harvard University and Yale University the season-ending football contest is simply called The Game, dating back to 1875.
- Princeton University and University of Pennsylvania – (men's basketball, Penn-Princeton football rivalry). The 2008 season was the first since 1989 that neither Penn nor Princeton won the Ivy League men's basketball championship.
- United States Merchant Marine Academy and United States Coast Guard Academy – (football) in the Secretaries Cup.
- United States Military Academy (Army) and United States Naval Academy (Navy) – (football) in the Army–Navy Game (itself part of the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy competition with the United States Air Force Academy (Air Force))
The Pac-12 Conference falls neatly into six regional pairings, leading to strong natural rivalries. Three of these pairs are cross-state rivals, one pair is within the same metropolitan region (San Francisco Bay Area), and one pair vies for bragging rights within the same city (Los Angeles).
- Arizona: University of Arizona and Arizona State University – (All Sports). Plays in the "Duel in the Desert". The two teams compete for the oldest trophy in the nation, The Territorial Cup, given as a reward to the victor of the game.
- Oregon: University of Oregon and Oregon State University – (All Sports) in the Civil War. This is the seventh-longest rivalry game in college football history. The alumni association of the winning school receives the Platypus Trophy, a wooden trophy that had been lost for more than 40 years before being rediscovered in 2005.
- Washington: University of Washington and Washington State University – (All Sports). The winner of the annual football game between the two schools wins the Apple Cup.
- San Francisco Bay Area: University of California, Berkeley (Cal) and Stanford University (all sports) – in the Big Game (football) for The Stanford Axe. The 1982 incarnation of this matchup involved the celebrated ending known simply as "The Play."
- Los Angeles: University of Southern California (USC) and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) (all sports) In (football): The Crosstown Showdown for the Victory Bell (See UCLA–USC rivalry)
- Rocky Mountains: University of Colorado and University of Utah. The Rumble in the Rockies in football was one of the most prominent rivalries from the early to mid-20th century. It was discontinued after 1962, but was revived in 2011 when the two schools were reunited in the Pac-12.
Other Pac-12 rivalries:
- University of California, Berkeley (Cal) and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) (all sports) – The schools are the highest rated universities in the University of California system and compete in the biggest "intra-university" rivalry in the nation.
- University of Oregon and University of Washington – (football) an unofficial rivalry that has grown up between the two of the four programs in the Pacific Northwest
- University of Arizona and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) (basketball and softball) – In the mid-1990s, Arizona and UCLA, as the two strongest basketball teams in the Pac-10, often clashed for dominance in the conference and for the conference championship. As in softball in the 1990s the two teams combined for nine of the ten championships awarded. And both combine for 19 national championships of 34 contended.
- Stanford University and University of Southern California (USC) – Two of the major private universities in California and the only two private schools in the Pac-12, these two schools are highly competitive in most sports. Recent football upsets of the long successful Trojans (24–23 Stanford in 2007, the biggest point-spread upset in NCAA football history and an end to USC's 6-year home winning streak and 55–21 in 2009, the most points ever scored against the Trojans in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum) have led to a rekindling of the long-standing rivalry.
Additional non-conference rivalries involving Pac-12 schools (the most famous of which is arguably Notre Dame-Southern California) can be found in other sections of this article.
Notre Dame rivalries
- Boston College – A game between the only two Catholic colleges that have Football Bowl Subdivision football programs. They compete for the Ireland Trophy. The rivalry has also been dubbed "The Holy War". This is one of several rivalries that have been revived on an intermittent basis following Notre Dame's 2013 entry into the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC); while Notre Dame remains an independent in football, it has agreed to play five games per season against ACC schools, and to play all other ACC members at least once every three years. The first game under this new arrangement was won by Notre Dame at Fenway Park in 2015.
- Michigan State University – a series that includes one of several "Games of the Century", the 1966 matchup that ended in a 10-10 tie. The teams play for the Megaphone Trophy. The game will be played less often in the future, due both to Notre Dame's new ACC commitments and the Big Ten increasing its conference schedule to nine games in 2016.
- Northwestern University – a rivalry that had its heyday in the 1920s and 1930s and even featured a Shillelagh trophy much like the ones that go to the winner of the Notre Dame-USC and Notre Dame-Purdue games. This rivalry game has been played infrequently in recent years.
- Purdue University – The Shillelagh Trophy. To be played less often in the future for the reasons mentioned in the Michigan State discussion.
- University of Miami – initially an easy win for the Irish, became a rivalry that was at its peak in the 1980s and often held national title implications. This is another rivalry that was revived following Notre Dame's arrival in the ACC; the first games under the new deal were in 2016 and 2019, with the next matchup expected to be in 2022. See also: Catholics vs. Convicts.
- University of Michigan – a game between two of the winningest college football programs of all time. This rivalry went on hiatus after the 2014 season due to Notre Dame's ACC commitments.
- United States Military Academy (Army) – a rivalry held almost every year from an initial meeting in 1913 to the 1950s, in the era when the two were among the top schools in the nation, the two now play infrequently, with the most recent game occurring in 2016 at the Alamodome in San Antonio.
- United States Naval Academy (Navy) – a rivalry which Notre Dame has dominated. Navy won this game in 2007 for the first time since 1963, and again in 2009, 2010, and 2016, somewhat reversing the lopsided nature of the rivalry the previous four decades. It is one of the longer-running series in college football and is always hard-fought on both sides. Before Navy became a football-only member of the American Athletic Conference in 2015, the two schools were the longest-standing independents in Division I FBS. The rivalry is officially scheduled through the 2026 season, and is expected to continue indefinitely.
- University of Pittsburgh – longtime rivals that shared Big East Conference affiliations (except in football) and ACC affiliations when both schools joined the ACC in 2013. Many of Notre Dame's most famed talents such as Joe Montana, Lou Holtz and Johnny Lujack hail from the Pittsburgh area. The "public vs. private" aspect as well as always having opposing team members that have played with or against each other since grade school has given the contest a unique distinction of dividing neighborhoods or even families during a fall Saturday. This rivalry will be played once every three years as part of Notre Dame's agreement to play five ACC schools per season.
- University of Southern California – Playing for the Jeweled Shillelagh, it is a game between two of the three teams with the most Heisman Trophies. See also: Notre Dame–USC football rivalry
- Stanford University Nicknamed the Legends Trophy, this rivalry is a battle between legend-producing schools. Notre Dame created many legends while Stanford created legends like Jim Plunkett, John Elway, Toby Gerhart, and recently Andrew Luck.
- Georgia Tech Played on and off since the early mid-20th Century as a North vs. South rivalry of sorts. Following Notre Dame's arrival in the ACC, the rivalry resumed in 2015 and 2018, with the next meeting expected to be in 2021.
Additionally, Notre Dame men's basketball has traditional rivalries with DePaul University, Marquette University, and UCLA when each of the programs met regularly and were national contenders. Notre Dame women's basketball has developed a nationally significant rivalry with the University of Connecticut, with a published book focusing on one specific matchup.
- Bradley University and Illinois State University – College basketball's I-74 Rivalry
- Loyola University Chicago and University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) – A Chicago rivalry that played out in the Horizon League for nearly 20 years, but became a nonconference matchup with Loyola's 2013 departure for the Missouri Valley Conference.
- Illinois and Missouri
- Indiana State University and Ball State University -- While this was an all-sports rivalry from 1919 through 1972, spanning the Indiana Intercollegiate Conference, Indiana Collegiate Conference and Midwestern Conference; it diminished when the Midwestern Conference dissolved and both schools joined rival conferences; the Missouri Valley Conference and the Mid-American Conference, respectively. Despite being in different conferences, the schools compete annually in most sports and periodically in football (Blue Key Victory Bell). Indiana State holds series leads in Men's Basketball (73-58), Baseball (90-51), Women's Basketball (22-9); they trail in football (24-38-1).
- Ball State University and Purdue University Fort Wayne – Men's volleyball rivalry that plays out within the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association. Prior to the 2018–19 school year, the second party to the rivalry was Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW); that school was dissolved in July 2018 and replaced by separate institutions affiliated with Indiana University and Purdue University. The IPFW athletic program was inherited by the Purdue-affiliated school. According to the college men's volleyball website Off the Block, which considers this the best rivalry in the sport, "There's respect along with mutual animosity" between players from the schools.
- Butler University and Valparaiso University – While this was an all-sports rivalry in the Horizon League from Valparaiso's arrival in 2007 to Butler's departure in 2012, it has its roots in football, in which the two schools first played in 1927 and have played annually since 1951. Currently, they are conference rivals in the Pioneer Football League. The current rivalry trophy, the "Hoosier Helmet", was created prior to the 2006 season to commemorate the football rivalry.
- DePauw University and Wabash College – College football's Monon Bell Classic
- Indiana and Ohio
- Iowa State University and University of Iowa – This bitter intrastate rivalry is played out in nearly every sport for the Cy-Hawk Series trophy, an annual athletic competition involving all head-to-head regular season competitions between the two archrivals from the Big 12 and Big Ten Conferences. In football, the Cyclones and Hawkeyes compete annually for the Cy-Hawk Trophy.
- Iowa State University, University of Iowa, University of Northern Iowa, and Drake University play in the state's mythical Big Four Series.
- Drake University and University of Northern Iowa play for the DUNI Trophy. Members of the Missouri Valley Conference, they are rivals in almost all sports except football. While both operate FCS football programs, Drake plays in the non-scholarship Pioneer Football League and UNI in the scholarship-granting and highly competitive Missouri Valley Football Conference.
- Iowa and Nebraska
- Drake University and Creighton University – Former Missouri Valley Conference rivals play for the I-80 Trophy. The schools had been together in the MVC from 1928 until Creighton left in 1948, and again from Creighton's return in 1976 until 2013, when Creighton joined the new Big East.
- Ferris State University and Grand Valley State University The most fierce rivalry of NCAA Division II sports in the Midwest; The Anchor-Bone Classic trophy is awarded to the winner of this historic battle.
- Western Michigan University and Central Michigan University – Winner receives the CMU–WMU Rivalry Trophy; often cited as one of the greatest rivalries in American collegiate football among the mid-majors.
- Eastern Michigan University, Central Michigan University, and Western Michigan University – Intrastate rivalry. Winner of head-to-head round-robin receives the Michigan MAC Trophy for football and men's basketball
- Lake Superior State University and Northern Michigan University – (hockey) once two major hockey powerhouses, these two Upper Peninsula schools have no problem showing up at the other's home ice arena three hours away.
- Calvin–Hope rivalry – Notable Division III basketball rivalry
- Hope College and Kalamazoo College – The Wooden Shoe Rivalry
- Northwest Missouri State University and Truman State University – The Old Hickory Stick, which dates back to 1930 and was the oldest rivalry in NCAA Division II football. After the Mid–America Intercollegiate Athletics Association expanded to 15 schools, Northwest and Truman were not scheduled to play each other in 2012. The rivalry went on hiatus following that season, when Truman joined the Great Lakes Valley Conference.
- Missouri and Ohio
- Creighton University and University of Nebraska–Lincoln – Battle between schools that were long the only two Division I schools in the state of Nebraska. This rivalry is exacerbated by the fact that one is a private and Catholic school and the other is the primary public university in the state. Also, Omaha and Lincoln represent the two largest cities in Nebraska, separated by only roughly 50 miles (80 km). Primarily a basketball rivalry, although baseball has become a heated sport of contention within the last ten years.
- University of Nebraska at Kearney and University of Nebraska Omaha (Omaha) – Mostly a football and wrestling rivalry. Both schools were almost always in the top five in Division II wrestling. The football teams played for the Nebraska Bell, a trophy that was introduced to the Football rivalry in 2002. Omaha has the series 25–8 over Kearney. However, the football rivalry ended after the 2010 season when Omaha dropped football, and the all-sports rivalry went dormant in 2011 when Omaha moved to Division I in all sports.
- The Dakotas
- North Dakota State University and South Dakota State University – These two interstate rivals play for the Dakota Marker trophy in football, representing markers that were placed along the ND/SD border after they were split apart in 1889. The Dakota Marker rivalry was announced after both teams entered Division I sports in 2004, playing the first Dakota Marker Game. While the Marker is only a football trophy contested within the Missouri Valley Football Conference, the rivalry exists in other sports, with both schools also being members of The Summit League.
- University of North Dakota and North Dakota State University – These schools have played for the Nickel Trophy for football since 1894. They played for it until North Dakota State made the move to Division I FCS in 2004. North Dakota currently leads the series 62–46–3. The two schools resumed the football rivalry in 2015, meeting in Fargo, and will resume annual play in 2019, starting in Fargo. The rivalry was rekindled in non-football sports in 2018 when UND and NDSU were reunited in the Summit League, and will become a conference rivalry in football in 2020 when UND joins NDSU in the MVFC.
- Black Hills State University and South Dakota School of Mines and Technology – One of the oldest and most frequently played college football rivalries, NCAA Division II schools play in the Black Hills Brawl. The winner of the game gets the Homestake Trophy, named after a gold mine in the Black Hills. While the trophy is only awarded in football, the rivalry exists in other sports, with both schools also being members of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
- Central State University and Wilberforce University – A crosstown rivalry between NCAA Division II (Central State) and NAIA (Wilberforce) schools in the small community of Wilberforce. Both schools are among the few historically black schools outside the South. Central State, now a public school, began as a department within Wilberforce, then as now a private institution.
- Kent State University and University of Akron – Battle for the Wagon Wheel
- Miami University and University of Cincinnati – Football rivalry for the Victory Bell; oldest west of the Allegheny Mountains, since 1888
- Miami University and Ohio University – "Battle of the Bricks" all-sports rivalry
- University of Cincinnati and Xavier University – Two schools located 3 miles (4.8 km) apart from each other, one public, the other Catholic, makes for a vicious college basketball rivalry. The game has been historically known as the Crosstown Shootout. The 2011 game was marred by a bench-clearing brawl, which led to an official renaming of the rivalry game as the Crosstown Classic. After three years without significant incidents at the neutral U.S. Bank Arena in downtown Cincinnati, the rivalry returned to campus sites in 2015, and the "Crosstown Shootout" name returned.
- University of Dayton and Xavier University – Two Catholic schools in southwest Ohio battle in basketball for the Blackburn/McCafferty Trophy. The rivalry played out in the Atlantic 10 for nearly 20 years before Xavier's 2013 departure for the current Big East.
- University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University – Known as the "Battle of I-75"; winner gets the Peace Pipe
- Wright State University and University of Dayton – Also a crosstown public–Catholic rivalry. Dayton is located in the city proper, and Wright State is in the suburb of Fairborn but has a Dayton mailing address.
- South Dakota
- Black Hills State University and South Dakota School of Mines and Technology – Two schools located in the Black Hills region, one liberal arts, one engineering science, less than 50 miles (80 km) apart, are fierce rivals in all sports, but the football game is called the Black Hills Brawl; winner gets the Homestake Trophy.
- University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (Milwaukee) and Marquette University – This rivalry is fought in most sports, but most intense is men's soccer, where they battle for the Milwaukee Cup.
- University of Wisconsin–Madison and Marquette University – This rivalry is fought in most sports, but most intense is men's basketball, where the two schools meet annually, and have played each other over 125 times.
- New Jersey
- Rutgers University and Seton Hall University, a rivalry played out solely between the two institutions' men's basketball teams. Long a conference rivalry in the original Big East, it continued even after the conference's 2013 split (with Rutgers moving to the Big Ten a year later). The two schools have agreed to continue the men's basketball series through the 2020–21 season.
- Princeton University and Rutgers University, Despite their long-standing football rivalry dating back to the first intercollegiate football game in 1869, these two schools have not met on the gridiron since 1980. They continue to compete in every other sport. The two universities also continue this rivalry off the field in one of the longer running intercollegiate prank wars, the Rutgers–Princeton Cannon War.
- New York
- Buffalo Big 4 Basketball – University at Buffalo, Canisius College, Niagara University, St. Bonaventure University
- The New School university's art and design college, Parsons School of Design, and Fashion Institute of Technology; academic rivalry in the area of fashion, one that is contested annually in the Fushion Fashion Show.
- Long Island University (LIU) and St. Francis College (St. Francis Brooklyn), primarily a basketball rivalry between two schools in Brooklyn less than a mile apart. The rivalry is also known as the Battle of Brooklyn. The two teams first played in 1928, when LIU consisted solely of what is now that institution's Brooklyn campus. In 1975, by which time LIU had added what is now the Post campus in Nassau County, New York, the Brooklyn campus and St. Francis formalized their rivalry, holding an annual game. Both are currently members of the Northeast Conference, and now play two regular-season games each season in basketball, although only one of the two games is officially designated as a "Battle of Brooklyn" matchup. The rivalry took its current form in the 2019–20 school year, when LIU merged the athletic programs of its two main campuses—the NCAA Division I LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds and Division II LIU Post Pioneers—into a single Division I athletic program competing as the LIU Sharks. The rivalry remains a geographic "Battle of Brooklyn" in some sports (including basketball) but not in others, as some sports of the unified LIU program (including basketball) are based in Brooklyn and others at Post.
- Manhattan College and Fordham University; Primarily a basketball rivalry between these two Catholic schools in The Bronx. Also known as the Battle of the Bronx. Its 100th basketball game was played on November 28, 2007.
- Marist College and Siena College; Many fans and sportswriters dubbed this match-up as "The Battle of I-87" because of the two-hour proximity of each school on Interstate 87 highway (coincidentally, the approximate distance between the two is 87.4 miles). It is said that no other two colleges in the Mid-Hudson Region have a hatred and distaste for one another than the Marist Red Foxes and Siena Saints. Although this rivalry exist in all sports, it is most heated during the basketball season. Whether it's held at McCann Field House or the Times Union Center, both school's visiting fans come in droves, so eventfully conflicts are bound to happen on the court or in the stands. In 2009, the two school's club-level ice hockey teams established the 87 Challenge Cup, an annual three game round-robin challenge for a replica I-87 road sign; both of the team's logos and winning years are engraved on the back. Siena leads that series, 2–1.
- Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute ("RPI") and Union College – (football and ice hockey) for the Dutchman's Shoes – the oldest college football rivalry in New York state
- Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Clarkson University (ice hockey)
- University of Rochester and Washington University in St. Louis two of the top D3 Basketball Programs – UAA
- St. Lawrence University and Clarkson University (ice hockey)
- University at Albany (Albany) and Binghamton University (most sports, especially basketball)
- University at Albany (Albany) and Siena College (men's basketball) for the Albany Cup
- University at Albany (Albany) and Stony Brook University – Like Albany–Binghamton, a New York public-school rivalry that mostly plays out in the America East Conference. The two schools' football teams, which had played in separate conferences throughout their histories in that sport, became conference rivals in the Colonial Athletic Association in 2013.
- SUNY Cortland and Ithaca College (football) for the Cortaca Jug
- SUNY New Paltz and Marist College (woman's rugby). The two schools, separated by only the Mid-Hudson Bridge, were perennial finalists in the Metropolitan New York Rugby Union rugby playoffs.
- SUNY New Paltz and Vassar College (men's rugby) contest the Hudson River Rivalry in the Tri-State Rugby Conference and formally the METNY Rugby Union. The schools also have a rivalry in men's volleyball, with both competing in the single-sport United Volleyball Conference.
- St. John Fisher College and Nazareth College East Avenue rivals in Pittsford, New York
- Syracuse University and Cornell University, primarily in lacrosse. The two schools are separated by an hour and faced off in the classic 2009 NCAA lacrosse championship game.
- Rochester Institute of Technology and Canisius College (violent ice hockey history)
- Oswego State and Plattsburgh State, primarily in Ice Hockey
- Philadelphia Big 5 – annual basketball series involving Philadelphia area teams: La Salle University, University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph's University, Temple University, Villanova University
- Two of the three Catholic schools in the Big Five, Saint Joseph's and Villanova, have their own rivalry known as The Holy War.
- With Drexel University, physically adjacent to Penn, the group becomes the City 6. Drexel and Penn have their own rivalry, the Battle of 33rd Street. This is geographically the closest rivalry in NCAA Division I, with the schools' basketball arenas separated by about 0.3 miles/500 m.
- University of Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania State University – A traditional football rivalry for both schools, the teams have not played each other since 2000. This football rivalry was renewed in 2016, with the teams playing a 4-game series through 2019. The rivalry continues to exist in other sports and between alumni and fans.
- University of Pittsburgh and Duquesne University play the annual City Game in college basketball.
- University of Pittsburgh and Villanova University is an intraconference basketball rivalry that has existed since both schools were members of the Eastern 8.
- Lehigh University and Lafayette College most played and longest uninterrupted rivalry in college football: as of 2018[update], 154 matchups, and played at least once every year since 1897. The 150th game in the rivalry was played at Yankee Stadium in 2014. See The Rivalry.
- Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Slippery Rock University
- Cheyney University and Lincoln University – The two oldest black colleges or HBCU in America. The schools compete in everything athletic or academic. Two teams compete annually in the heated thanksgiving weekend Basketball game. The reinstatement of Lincoln's football program will add more fire to the rivalry.
- Bloomsburg University and East Stroudsburg University – Division 2 football
- Haverford College and Swarthmore College winner of the most games against each other receives Hood Trophy.
- Ursinus College and Franklin & Marshall College
- Franklin & Marshall College and Dickinson College "Conestoga Wagon Cup" – winner historically received a Conestoga Wagon that was passed between the two schools; however, in 2000 when Franklin & Marshall won the game, the Wagon was retired to the Franklin & Marshall College Alumni Sports and Fitness Center, but the game is still played each year close to Homecoming.
- Philadelphia Big 5 – annual basketball series involving Philadelphia area teams: La Salle University, University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph's University, Temple University, Villanova University
Summit University & Keystone College This rivalry is the biggest game for the two colleges due to closeness of location and the friendly relations of the school's makes the games in all sports so competitive. There is no football at these schools. They are a 20-minute drive separating campuses. Summit University & Cairn University These teams are the premiere NCCAA teams in the nation fighting it out for top dog in Men's and Women's Soccer. There is no football at these schools. The games are wild and rough with all to play for. They are blood boiling games. The schools passionately dislike each other.
- New England
- The Battle of Whitney Avenue– A college hockey series between ECAC hockey members Quinnipiac and Yale. The schools met in the 2013 National championship game.
- The Beanpot – a college ice hockey tournament involving four Boston-area schools and held at the city's main arena, TD Garden: Boston College, Boston University, Harvard University, Northeastern University
- The Baseball Beanpot, an annual rivalry tournament which began in 1989. The participants are the same as in the hockey Beanpot, except that Boston University, which has no baseball program, is replaced by UMass.
- Green Line Rivalry – Boston College vs. Boston University – One of the best known and fierce rivalries in NCAA Hockey, but also included football before BU terminated its football program in 1962 – Has been called the greatest rivalry in all of sports
- Boston College-Harvard Basketball Rivalry – a rivalry between the two premier academic universities with D-I basketball programs in the Greater Boston area.
- Ivy League schools – see #Ivy League and service academy rivalries (above)
- Amherst College and Williams College – known as "The Biggest Little Game In America"
- Colby College, Bates College and Bowdoin College or Colby-Bates-Bowdoin – one of New England's oldest rivalries, dating to 1889, these three rivals originated after being baptized as "Little Ivies" situated in rural Maine.
- Harvard and Yale – Older than The Game by 23 years, the Harvard–Yale Regatta was the original source of the athletic rivalry between the two schools.
- University of New Hampshire and University of Maine the New Hampshire–Maine hockey rivalry is one of the most intense NCAA ice hockey rivalries and there is also a season ending football rivalry game between the two schools for the Brice-Cowell Musket.
- UConn–UMass football rivalry, or the "U-Game"
- Boston College–UMass football rivalry
- Commonwealth Classic, Boston College-UMass Basketball Rivalry
- Colonial Clash, UMass-UNH football rivalry. A rivalry whose future is in doubt with UMass departure for the FBS.
- University of Rhode Island–Providence College Basketball Rivalry
- Washington metropolitan area
- George Mason University and George Washington University — The Revolutionary Rivalry, an effective crosstown rivalry created by conference realignment when Mason joined the A-10 in 2013. Mason is a public school in central Fairfax County, Virginia, while GW is a private institution in the DC neighborhood of Foggy Bottom. Both are named after Founding Fathers whose homes were in modern-day Fairfax County.
- Ivy League schools – see #Ivy League and service academy rivalries (above)
- United States Military Academy (Army) and United States Naval Academy (Navy) – (football) in the Army–Navy Game (itself part of the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy competition with the United States Air Force Academy (Air Force))
- University of Pittsburgh and West Virginia University – known as the Backyard Brawl. The football version of the rivalry ended for the time being after the 2011 season, with WVU moving to the Big 12 and Pitt announcing its future departure for the ACC. The men's basketball rivalry resumed in the 2017–18 season.
- Syracuse University and Georgetown University traditional basketball rivals, dating to pre-Big East. The rivalry temporarily ended in 2013 when Syracuse left the original Big East for the ACC and Georgetown broke away with the rest of the "Catholic 7" to form the current Big East. The schools resumed their men's basketball series in the 2015–16 season.
- University of Pittsburgh vs Syracuse University is a longstanding annual eastern and intraconference rivalry in both football, played continuously since 1955, and basketball. This remains a conference rivalry in the ACC, with their football matchup being one of several "protected" cross-divisional rivalries in that sport (i.e., guaranteed to be held annually).
- Penn State University vs. Syracuse University, resumed in 2013.
- Penn State University and West Virginia University, a northeastern football rivalry that has been played infrequently since Penn State joined the Big Ten Conference.
- Rutgers University and University of Connecticut – Before Rutgers' 2014 move to the Big Ten, this was a growing rivalry in football and a heated rivalry in women's basketball between the two Big East/American Athletic Conference schools. Dormant since 2014.
- University of Pittsburgh and University of Cincinnati – One of the newer rivalries and known as the River City Rivalry, the winner was awarded the Paddlewheel Trophy. The 2009 game had Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, both ranked in the Top 25, playing for, essentially, the Big East championship and a BCS bowl berth. The rivalry went dormant after Pitt's ACC move; the next football games between the schools are scheduled for 2023 and 2024.
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and California Institute of Technology (Caltech), in pranks and academics
- Princeton University and Syracuse University – the two teams have clinched 14 NCAA men's lacrosse div. I champions in last two decades; two powerhouses ties NCAA div. I championship series, 2–2.
- Syracuse University and Johns Hopkins University, a major NCAA men's lacrosse rivalry. The two schools combine for 20 national titles and have a heated rivalry against each other.
Universities in the Southeastern U.S., including those in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Conference USA (C-USA), Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), Southeastern Conference (SEC), Southern Conference (SoCon), Southland Conference, and Sun Belt Conference, have perhaps the most complex jumble of rivalries, many associated with annual football games, and often with colorful nicknames:
- University of Alabama and Auburn University – the "Iron Bowl", formerly played in Birmingham, Alabama, but now played alternately in Auburn and Tuscaloosa. The schools have a lower-profile, but still intense, men's basketball rivalry.
- University of Alabama and University of Tennessee – The "Third Saturday in October" game. An already heated rivalry hit fever pitch after Alabama went on NCAA probation in the early 2000s for recruiting violations reported by Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer.
- Alabama State University and Alabama A&M University – "The Magic City Classic", played annually in Birmingham. ASU also has a long-running rivalry with nearby Tuskegee University, "The Turkey Day Classic" played each Thanksgiving Day.
- Alcorn State University and Jackson State University – Known as the Capital City Classic.
- Appalachian State University and Georgia Southern University – These two schools, with roots as teachers' colleges and similar enrollments, have an annual football rivalry that was one of the most intense at the FCS level, with the two combining for nine FCS national titles. From 1993 to 2013, this was an annual matchup in the SoCon; both schools joined FBS and the Sun Belt in 2014.
- Appalachian State University and Western Carolina University – An annual football game known as The Battle for the Old Mountain Jug, but became increasingly non-competitive from the mid-1980s on with the growth of the Appalachian football program. The rivalry ended when Appalachian left for FBS football and the Sun Belt in 2014.
- University of Arkansas and Louisiana State University – "The Battle for the Golden Boot" game. The winner of this game receives a golden trophy of the states of Louisiana and Arkansas.
- University of Arkansas and University of Mississippi ("Ole Miss") – rivalry that is sometimes referred to as the Nutt Bowl (after Houston Nutt, who left the head coaching job at Arkansas after the 2007 season to take the same position at Ole Miss). See Arkansas–Ole Miss football rivalry.
- University of Arkansas and University of Missouri – called the Battle Line Rivalry. Started annual meeting in 2014.
- University of Arkansas and Texas A&M University – the "Arkansas–Texas A&M football rivalry" started when both were members of the Southwestern Conference together. It once again became a conference rivalry in 2012 when the two schools were reunited in the SEC.
- University of Arkansas and University of Texas at Austin – The rivalry with Texas is one of the biggest for Arkansas.
- Auburn University and University of Georgia – The "Deep South's Oldest Rivalry"
- Auburn University and Louisiana State University (LSU) – budding SEC Western Division rivalry
- Auburn University and University of Florida – historically one of the Southeastern Conference's longest rivalries, these SEC opponents were removed from annual competition during the 2002 scheduling decision to reduce permanent division opponents to one team. Auburn continued to play Georgia, while Florida kept LSU, much to the chagrin of older fans.
- Belmont University and Lipscomb University – two colleges in Nashville, Tennessee separated by 3 miles (5 km) of the same road; their basketball rivalry is known as the Battle of the Boulevard. The rivalry played out for many years in the NAIA, and later in the Atlantic Sun Conference (ASUN), but it became a non-conference matchup in 2012 when Belmont joined the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC), Despite this, the men's and women's basketball teams still play two games each season, a rare feature among non-conference matchups.
- Belmont University and Tennessee State University – a Nashville rivalry created by conference realignment, with Belmont joining Tennessee State in the OVC.
- Bethune–Cookman University and Florida A&M University – the two MEAC schools compete annually in football in the Florida Classic.
- University of North Carolina at Charlotte (Charlotte) and Davidson College, the only two Division I schools in North Carolina's most populous county, Mecklenburg County, compete each year in basketball for the Hornet's Nest Trophy.
- The Citadel and Virginia Military Institute (VMI) – (football) The Military Classic of the South "The Battle for the Silver Shako." The schools had been together in the Southern Conference from The Citadel's arrival in 1936 until VMI's departure in 2003. They were reunited when VMI rejoined the SoCon in 2014.
- Clemson University and Florida State University – The annual football matchup between the two schools was known in the early 2000s as the Bowden Bowl because Tommy Bowden, who coached Clemson from 1999 to 2008, is the son of Bobby Bowden, who was head coach at Florida State throughout that period.
- Clemson University and University of Georgia – A rivalry between nearby schools that had national title implications in the early 1980s, but has been played less often since the SEC went to an eight-game conference schedule.
- Clemson University and Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) – Long running rivalry (now permanent ACC cross-division rivals); legendary coach John Heisman coached at both schools.
- Clemson University and North Carolina State University – The Textile Bowl.
- Clemson University and University of South Carolina – this in-state rivalry has political and cultural origins and is one of the oldest rivalries in the South. See Carolina-Clemson rivalry and Clemson–South Carolina football brawl.
- University of the Cumberlands and Union College – These NAIA schools, located in adjacent counties in eastern Kentucky, have a football rivalry that was first played in 1905, but was not an annual affair until 1985. The schools have played for the Brass Lantern, representing the region's coal mining legacy, since 1995, and have been rivals in Mid-South Conference football since 2002 (Cumberlands is a full member, and Union a football-only member).
- Duke University and University of Maryland – This is a recent rivalry, sparked because of Maryland's increased competitiveness in NCAA basketball. The two teams have long been competitive in basketball, and Maryland is known for its visceral hatred of Duke. However, Maryland's 2014 departure for the Big Ten ended the rivalry for the time being.
- Duke University and University of North Carolina – The two schools are only 9 miles (14 km) apart; the football teams play for the Victory Bell, which the winning team paints in their school's shade of blue. The basketball rivalry is one of the most high-profile in all of U.S. sports (see Carolina–Duke rivalry).
- East Carolina University and North Carolina State University – Two of the largest universities in the state of North Carolina. "The Battle for the Barrel" is a trophy which ECU currently holds as the victor of the most recent game in 2016.
- Elon University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNC Greensboro) – A long-standing Southern Conference rivalry that was recently dubbed "The Faceoff on 40: The Fight and Fire Classic" due to the schools' proximity and situation along Interstate 40. The future of the rivalry is now in doubt with Elon having left the SoCon for the CAA in 2014.
- University of Florida and Florida State University – Heated rivalry between two college football powerhouses. The battles between Bobby Bowden and Steve Spurrier provided some of the rivalry's most memorable games. In the mid-1990s, this game almost always had national championship implications.
- University of Florida and University of Georgia – The Florida vs. Georgia Football Classic, unofficially called "The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party", at the (nominally) neutral site of Jacksonville, Florida.
- University of Florida and University of Miami – Formerly played for The Seminole War Canoe Trophy. With their win over the Hurricanes in 2008, the Gators are the current holders of the Florida Cup (See also: Florida–Miami football rivalry).
- University of Florida and University of Tennessee – A rivalry that saw its heyday in the 1990s, when the Southeastern Conference realigned and pitted these schools against each other every year.
- Florida Atlantic University (FAU) and Florida International University (FIU) – A Miami-area rivalry that plays itself out annually in football's Shula Bowl and conference basketball games. It was a conference rivalry from 1993 to 1998 in the TAAC (now the ASUN); the two schools were reunited for football in 2005 and other sports in 2006 when FAU joined the Sun Belt. The two schools moved together to C-USA in 2013.
- Florida State University and University of Miami – From the 1980s to the early 2000s, the match-up often held national championship implications. See Wide Right I and Wide Right II.
- Furman University and Wofford College – The oldest football rivalry in South Carolina, involving SoCon members located in the two main cities of Upstate South Carolina (respectively Greenville and Spartanburg). In modern times, this has effectively become a crosstown rivalry, as the two cities are now at the core of the state's largest metropolitan area.
- University of Georgia and Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) – "Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate".
- Georgia Southern University and Georgia State University – An in-state rivalry, both schools lay claim to the initialism "GSU". Although the football rivalry is still relatively young, both schools have shared an intense rivalry in other sports, particularly men's basketball, since the 1970s.
- Grambling State University and Southern University – The Bayou Classic in football is the most famous HBCU rivalry. For decades, it had been the only such matchup televised annually by one of the country's four major over-the-air television networks, but NBC has since moved the game from its main network to its cable/satellite NBCSN channel.
- Hampton University and Norfolk State University – An effective crosstown rivalry between HBCUs in the Hampton Roads area, and a study in contrasts—Hampton is a private institution on "The Peninsula", and Norfolk State is a public school on "The Southside". The football version is known as the Battle of the Bay.
- Jackson State University and Southern University – The Boombox Classic is the annual match-up between JSU and SU. The name is a reference to the two schools' marching bands – JSU's being the "Sonic Boom of the South" and SU's being "The Human Jukebox".
- Jackson State University and Tennessee State University – Known as the Southern Heritage Classic.
- Johns Hopkins University and University of Maryland - The Rivalry Trophy (Lacrosse) The oldest rivalry in college lacrosse, and now a conference rivalry in both men's and women's lacrosse. Maryland joined the Big Ten for all sports and Hopkins for men's lacrosse only in 2014, and Hopkins joined Big Ten women's lacrosse in 2016.
- Johns Hopkins University and University of Virginia - Doyle Smith Cup (Lacrosse)
- University of Kentucky and University of Louisville – the "Governor's Cup" game in football, but even more significant as a basketball rivalry known as the "Battle for the Bluegrass". See Kentucky–Louisville rivalry.
- "University of Kentucky" and "Duke University" – Mostly a men's basketball rivalry, mainly created by an epic 1992 NCAA tournament game between the teams.
- University of Kentucky and Indiana University, locally significant in football and nationally important in men's basketball, sometimes referred to in football as the Bourbon Barrel Trophy. See Indiana–Kentucky rivalry. The basketball rivalry ended for the time being in 2012 when the two schools could not agree on the location for the games (though the teams have played in the NCAA tournament twice since the last regular-season game in 2011).
- University of Kentucky and University of South Carolina – While these two SEC schools have significant rivalries in other sports, this matchup is most significant in men's soccer, as these are the only two SEC members that field varsity soccer teams for men. Both are currently single-sport members of Conference USA, with their rivalry known as the SEC Derby.
- University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee – A border war, UT has dominated UK over the last quarter century in football and UK in men's basketball. In addition to the important ball games, blood banks in the home cities of each university(Lexington, Kentucky and Knoxville, Tennessee) compete to see who can raise the most units of blood. This is known informally as the Blue-Orange Crush. The football game is traditionally known as "The Battle for the Beer Barrel," named for the orange and blue barrel that the winning team once received.
- University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Troy University – Men's tennis, "War at the Wasp Nest"
- University of Louisiana at Lafayette and University of Louisiana at Monroe – the "Battle on the Bayou"
- University of Louisville and University of Cincinnati – long-running rivalry known as the battle for The Keg of Nails. U of L's 2014 move to the ACC ended the rivalry for the time being.
- University of Louisville and University of Memphis – Longtime rivals in the Missouri Valley Conference, Metro Conference, and C-USA. The rivalry went largely dormant when U of L left for the Big East in 2005. While Memphis rejoined Louisville in the American Athletic Conference in 2013, U of L left for the ACC a year later.
- Louisiana State University (LSU) and University of Mississippi ("Ole Miss") – Magnolia Bowl.
- Louisiana State University (LSU) and Tulane University – the "Battle for the Rag"
- Louisiana Tech University and University of Southern Mississippi – Rivalry in Dixie.
- Loyola (MD) and Johns Hopkins University Lacrosse rivalry, also known as the Charles Street Rivalry. See Johns Hopkins–Loyola lacrosse rivalry.
- Marshall University and Ohio University – (football) the Battle for the Bell
- Marshall University and West Virginia University – Also known as the Friends of Coal Bowl; due to the vast mining industry in the state of West Virginia.
- University of Maryland and United States Naval Academy (Navy) – A once heated in-state football rivalry that lapsed for 40 years after a controversial game in 1964 was finally revived in 2005 (See also: Crab Bowl Classic).
- University of Maryland and North Carolina State University – Hostility has increased in the football rivalry during recent years. Also, has a tradition of competitive basketball, including what has been called the greatest college basketball game ever played, the 1974 ACC Championship game. Another rivalry that ended with Maryland's move to the Big Ten.
- University of Maryland and University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) – Historically dominated by Maryland, this budding lacrosse rivalry was intensified in the 2007 NCAA Men's Lacrosse Tournament when the Retrievers upset the Terrapins in College Park. It heated the following year when tournament committee chairman and Terrapins head coach Dave Cottle set up UMBC to travel far from their fanbase to avoid playing them in the tournament, sparking accusations in the lacrosse world of using politics to avoid a matchup.
- University of Maryland and West Virginia University – A long tradition of football rivalry, dating back to 1919 (See also: Maryland–West Virginia football rivalry).
- University of Memphis and University of Southern Mississippi – The Black and Blue Bowl. Went on hiatus after the 2012 season when Memphis joined The American.
- Middle Tennessee State University and Western Kentucky University (WKU) – These C-USA members, both regional universities separated by about 100 miles (160 km) of Interstate 65 and Interstate 24, have been rivals in most sports, especially football, in three different conferences. The football version of the rivalry is known as 100 Miles of Hate.
- University of Mississippi ("Ole Miss") and Mississippi State University – the "Egg Bowl"
- Nicholls State University and Northwestern State University – The NSU Challenge football game is a Louisiana and Southland Conference rivalry, with the winner receiving the NSU Trophy.
- Nicholls State University and Southeastern Louisiana University – The River Bell Classic football game is a Louisiana and Southland Conference rivalry, with the winner receiving the River Bell Trophy.
- University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University Known as the Carolina–State rivalry.
- University of North Carolina and University of Virginia – "The South's Oldest Rivalry"
- University of North Carolina and Wake Forest University
- North Carolina A&T State University and North Carolina Central University – the North Carolina A&T–North Carolina Central rivalry was an annual, interdivisional HBCU rivalry until 2005.
- North Carolina A&T State University and Winston-Salem State University – the rivalry between the two Piedmont Triad HBCUs briefly escalated with WSSU's transition to Division I athletics and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference of which NC A&T is a member, but faded after WSSU backed out of its D-I transition and decided to stay in D-II.
- North Carolina State University and Wake Forest University – The oldest ACC basketball rivalry with over 225 played games.
- Northwestern State University and Stephen F. Austin State University – a heated Southland Conference rivalry, with the winner receiving the largest trophy in all of college football, Chief Caddo.
- Rhodes College and Sewanee: The University of the South – The longest-running (continuously played) college football rivalry in the South, starting in 1899. Since 1954 the winner of this game has been awarded the Orgill Trophy.
- University of Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University – A crosstown rivalry in Virginia's state capital that spans all sports except football, which Richmond plays and VCU does not. The basketball version has been known locally by several names, currently the Capital City Classic. Since 2012, when VCU joined Richmond in the Atlantic 10 Conference, it has been a conference rivalry.
- University of Richmond and The College of William & Mary – known as the "Oldest Rivalry in the South", this is the fourth oldest rivalry in college football, with the Tribe first battling the Spiders in 1890. The Tribe is up all-time, 59–52–5
- University of Tennessee and University of Connecticut (UConn) – a nationally important rivalry in women's basketball (see UConn–Tennessee rivalry), though not regularly played since 2007, after then-Tennessee coach Pat Summitt accused UConn of recruiting irregularities.
- University of Tennessee and Vanderbilt University – General Robert Neyland, the coach who brought a winning tradition to the University of Tennessee, was originally brought in to "beat Vandy", as Vanderbilt dominated the series in the early part of last century. In 2005, Vanderbilt beat the University of Tennessee for the first time in over two decades – one of the then-longest streaks in the NCAA.
- University of Tennessee at Chattanoogaand Samford University – Southern Rail Rivalry.
- University of Virginia and Virginia Tech (see Virginia–Virginia Tech rivalry) – they play for the Commonwealth Cup in football
- Virginia Tech and Radford University – The rivalry is heated for every sport in which the two New River Valley schools compete, but in soccer one of the largest trophies in the nation is contested when they play annually for "The New River Rock".
- Virginia Tech and West Virginia University – College football game played annually for the Black Diamond Trophy. Due to Virginia Tech's move to the ACC, and WVU's later move to the Big 12, this rivalry is now dormant.
- Washington College and Salisbury University – a storied Division III men's lacrosse rivalry, highlighted by the annual War on the Shore for the Charles B. Clark Cup, played alternately in Chestertown, Maryland, (home of Washington College) and Salisbury, Maryland. The 2006 War on the Shore was held at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The rivalry is also present to a lesser extent in all sports, as the two schools are the only Division III institutions on Maryland's Eastern Shore.
- University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus and University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez
Old Southeastern rivalries seldom played due to conference obligations, divisional changes etc.:
These rivalries involve Texas schools that are not currently members of the Big 12 Conference. In two of these rivalries, both sides involved were members of the old Southwest Conference, four of whose schools were founding members of the Big 12. Another rivalry involves an old SWC team against an Oklahoma rival.
- Texas Southern University (TSU) and Prairie View A&M University (PV) – The two largest HBCUs in Texas square off in fierce athletic competitions every year. The football game is deemed the "Labor Day Classic", played annually in Houston. With the growth of Greater Houston to include Prairie View, this is now an effective crosstown rivalry.
- The University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) and University of North Texas (UNT) – The crosstown rivals are the two largest universities in the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex. The longest standing sport rivalry is in men's basketball which began in 1925 and was rekindled in 2015.
- The University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) and Texas State University – The Sun Belt Conference in-state rivals are highly competitive against each other except in football, which UTA no longer plays, and normally draw higher than average attendance for several sports.
- Rice University and University of Houston – Compete for the Bayou Bucket in both football and basketball, and in the Silver Glove series in baseball, as part of the Houston–Rice rivalry. While Houston moved to the American Athletic Conference (The American) in 2013, the rivalry has continued, at least for the time being.
- Rice University and University of Tulsa – Competed for the Williams Trophy. The rivalry went dormant when Tulsa joined The American in 2014.
- Sam Houston State University and Stephen F. Austin State University – Compete in the Battle of the Piney Woods.
- Southern Methodist University (SMU) and Rice University – College football's Battle for the Mayor's Cup. The rivalry went dormant when SMU joined The American in 2013.
- Southern Methodist University (SMU) and Texas Christian University (TCU) – Play in the Battle for the Iron Skillet. Although TCU moved to the Big 12 in 2012, and SMU joined The American in 2013, the football rivalry continues today.
- Stephen F. Austin State University and Northwestern State University – Play for the largest trophy in college athletics; Chief Caddo, a large, 7.5 ft tall 320 lb (150 kg) wooden Indian statue.
- University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and Texas State University – Compete in the I-35 rivalry. This was a conference rivalry in the 2012–13 school year, with both teams in the WAC, but the two schools separated after that season, with Texas State heading to the Sun Belt Conference and UTSA departing for Conference USA.
- United States Air Force Academy (Air Force) and Colorado College – Men's ice hockey and women's soccer. The two schools, both within the city of Colorado Springs, are not rivals in most sports, since Air Force is a member of NCAA Division I and CC is a member of the non-scholarship Division III. However, CC is one of a small number of Division III schools with special permission from the NCAA to award scholarships in two sports as a Division I member, and therefore competes alongside Air Force on an even footing in those sports. In men's ice hockey, the two schools have a long-standing rivalry known as the Battle for Pikes Peak; in women's soccer, CC is a single-sport member in Air Force's home league, the Mountain West Conference (MW).
- University of Alaska Anchorage and University of Alaska Fairbanks – (ice hockey) for the Governor's Cup. This became a conference matchup in 2013 when the schools were united in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).
- Boise State University and California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) – Primarily a football rivalry, with the teams playing for the Milk Can. The Milk Can game had been a regular conference rivalry in the WAC and later in the MW. but it is no longer an annual matchup; when the MW expanded to 12 football members in 2013, the two teams were placed in separate divisions (with no protected cross-division games).
- Boise State University and University of Idaho – An all-sports rivalry that lost some of its edge when Boise State left the WAC for the MW in 2011, and still more when Idaho returned to FCS football in 2018.
- Brigham Young University and University of Utah – (all sports: see BYU–Utah rivalry). The football version is known as the "Holy War", with the teams competing for the Beehive Boot.
- Cal Poly Pomona and UC San Diego – The two most successful programs in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). They have a fierce rivalry in all sports.
- California State University, Fullerton and California State University, Long Beach (Long Beach State); a baseball rivalry stemming from both program continual success.
- The College of Idaho and Northwest Nazarene University – A long-standing basketball rivalry, as well as an extensive history of student pranks.
- University of Colorado and Colorado State University – College football's Rocky Mountain Showdown
- Colorado State University and United States Air Force Academy for the Ram–Falcon Trophy
- University of Denver and Colorado College – (ice hockey) Battle for the Gold Pan Played between the superpowers of college hockey in the State of Colorado. Played since 1949. Widely considered to be the most heated and long standing rivalry in college hockey, it is one of the sport's most played rivalries in the United States with over 300 games between the two school (of which nearly 30 games were in the playoffs, and 40 games required overtime). Both schools were charter members of the WCHA in 1951, and became charter members of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference in 2011, which started play in 2013.
- Gonzaga University and Eastern Washington University – A longtime men's basketball rivalry, but much less competitive since the rise of Gonzaga's program to national prominence in the 21st century. Gonzaga is in the city of Spokane, and EWU is in nearby Cheney.
- Gonzaga University and University of Washington – an emerging, though intermittent, men's basketball rivalry. The winning school could claim bragging rights as best in the state. Has been on hold as neither program is willing to agree to restart the rivalry after Gonzaga's rise to prominence.
- Gonzaga University and Washington State University – also an emerging men's basketball rivalry. The two schools are about an hour apart by car.
- University of Hawaiʻi and California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) – All sports. Both were members of the WAC from 1992 to 2012, but have now separated, with Hawaiʻi leaving for the Big West and Fresno State to the MW. In football, however, it is still a conference rivalry, as Hawaiʻi football joined the MW alongside Fresno State. When MW football split into divisions in 2013, Fresno State and Hawaiʻi were placed in the same division, ensuring annual matchups for the foreseeable future.
- University of Hawaiʻi and Brigham Young University – Football and volleyball. BYU has a significant following in Hawaii—the school has a branch campus in Hawaii, and the LDS Church also operates a temple near the Hawaii campus. The football version has been off-and-on since the MW broke away from the WAC in 1999, separating the two schools. In men's volleyball, it was long a conference rivalry in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation before Hawaii's primary home of the Big West Conference launched a men's volleyball league in the 2018 season (2017–18 school year).
- University of Idaho and The University of Montana, with the football teams playing for the Little Brown Stein. The rivalry between border-state schools, both current members of the Big Sky Conference in non-football sports, with Montana also a football member of the conference, has its roots in football. The schools first played in football in 1903, and regularly played until Idaho moved to what is now Division I FBS in 1996. The all-sports rivalry lost some of its edge at that time, as Idaho also left the Big Sky, not returning until 2014. With Idaho reverting to FCS football and rejoining Big Sky football in 2018, the football rivalry has once again become an annual affair.
- University of Idaho and Washington State University – Known as the Battle of the Palouse. The two schools are located just 7 miles apart.
- University of Montana and Eastern Washington University – (all sports)
- University of Montana and Montana State University – Brawl of the Wild
- University of New Mexico and New Mexico State University – The Rio Grande Rivalry, involving all sports. Notably, the men's and women's basketball teams play home-and-away each season despite being in different conferences.
- University of San Diego and San Diego State University – (basketball, baseball, and soccer) Cross-city rivals with an added public–private angle.
- University of San Francisco and Santa Clara University – San Francisco Bay Area Jesuit universities; primarily a basketball rivalry
- San Jose State University and California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) – very even rivalry in both football and basketball for over 70 years. For most of the rivalry's history, it has been a conference matchup, with the two schools playing in five different leagues – the CCAA, West Coast Conference (briefly), PCAA/Big West, WAC, and since 2013 the MW.
- San Jose State University and Stanford University – close proximity in the Silicon Valley lead to a natural rivalry.
- Santa Clara University and Saint Mary's College of California – formerly a football rivalry, now a basketball rivalry. Both schools are charter members of what is now the West Coast Conference (WCC), share a Catholic affiliation, and are in different portions of the Bay Area (Santa Clara in Silicon Valley, and Saint Mary's in the East Bay).
- Saint Mary's College of California and Gonzaga University – Men's basketball rivalry that has become quite heated as Saint Mary's became the only consistent challenger to Gonzaga's WCC conference title streak in the late 2000s.
- Santa Clara University and San Jose State University – working man's university versus the local rich school; primarily a basketball rivalry.
- UC Davis and Cal Poly SLO – in the Battle for the Golden Horseshoe (football) for the Golden Horseshoe Trophy
- UC Davis and Sacramento State – The two programs compete in all sports for the annual Causeway Cup, and specifically in the Causeway Classic (football) for the Causeway Carriage and Causeway Trophy. In most sports, it is a non-conference rivalry, with UC Davis in the non-football Big West and Sacramento State in the football-sponsoring Big Sky. In two sports, football and men's soccer, it is a conference matchup—UC Davis is a football member of the Big Sky and Sacramento State is a men's soccer member of the Big West (the Big Sky sponsors women's soccer but not men's).
- UC Irvine and California State University, Long Beach (Long Beach State) – Black and Blue Rivalry Series: The two Southern California schools compete in various sports such as baseball, basketball and volleyball to accumulate points for every victory. The school with the most points at the end of the year wins a surfboard.
- UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly SLO – Blue–Green Rivalry: Battle for the Central Coast with an emphasis on sustainability. The most intense has become the competition in men's soccer, where the matchup has featured 5 of the top 15 attended regular season soccer matches in NCAA history, all of which have happened since 2007. Women's volleyball, men's and women's basketball, and baseball also are heated matchups.
- University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) and University of Nevada – in the Battle for Nevada (football) for the Fremont Cannon. This became a conference rivalry in 2012 when Nevada joined UNLV in the MW. Both schools were also placed in the same division when the MW expanded to 12 football members.
- University of Utah and Utah State University – (basketball and football, the Battle of the Brothers)
- University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and New Mexico State University – The Battle of I-10
- University of Wyoming and Colorado State University – (football) the Border War for the Bronze Boot
- Western Washington University and Central Washington University – (football) Known as the Battle in Seattle – played at CenturyLink Field in Seattle for the Cascade Cup.
- Coppin State University and Morgan State University − Separated by 5 Miles this traditional East vs. West Baltimore basketball is a traditional powerhouse HBCU and MEAC Rivalry Tabbed the "Battle of Baltimore".
- Cheyney University and Lincoln University – The two oldest black colleges, or HBCUs, in America, both located in Pennsylvania and also two of the few such schools outside the South. The schools compete in everything athletic or academic. Men's and women's teams compete annually in the heated thanksgiving weekend basketball games. The reinstatement of Lincoln's football program will add more fire to the rivalry.
- Central State University and Wilberforce University – Like Cheyney and Lincoln, these are also rare examples of HBCUs outside the South. This is also a crosstown rivalry, with both schools located in the small community of Wilberforce, Ohio. In addition, Central State began as a department within Wilberforce University before becoming a separate institution and a public school.
- North Carolina A&T State University and North Carolina Central University – the "Aggie-Eagle Classic" was an annual, interdivisional HBCU football until 2005.
- North Carolina A&T State University and Winston-Salem State University – the rivalry between the two Piedmont Triad HBCUs briefly escalated with WSSU's transition to Division I athletics and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference of which NC A&T is a member, but faded when WSSU backed out of its D-I transition and decided to stay in Division II.
- Grambling State University and Southern University – The Bayou Classic in football is the most famous HBCU rivalry, and for decades had been the only such matchup televised annually by one of the country's four major over-the-air television networks (NBC has since moved the game from its main network to its cable/satellite NBCSN network).
- Bethune–Cookman University and Florida A&M University – the two MEAC schools compete annually in football in the Florida Classic.
- Norfolk State University and Hampton University – A now-dormant effective crosstown rivalry; both schools are located in the Hampton Roads metropolitan area on opposite sides of the eponymous harbor. The football version is called the Battle of the Bay. The rivalry ended in all sports when Hampton left the MEAC for the Big South Conference in 2018.
- Virginia Union University and Virginia State University – Another virtual crosstown rivalry, this one involving Division II schools in the CIAA. Virginia Union is a private university in the state capital of Richmond, while Virginia State is a public school in nearby Ettrick.
- Saint Augustine's College and Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina are HBCU rivalries in all sports.
- Florida A&M University and Southern University – the oldest interconference rivalry and questionably the oldest in HBCU history. Dates back to 1941 and was played consecutively for 55 yrs, which ended in 2001 because of a heated confrontation between Pete Richardson of Southern and Billy "Joe" Taylor of Florida A&M.
- Xavier University of Louisiana and Dillard University – Crosstown rivalry between two NAIA schools, both members of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference, located in New Orleans. Since the two schools have been members of the GCAC since its formation in 1981, the men's and women's basketball teams play this Crosstown Classic game at least twice a year.
Religious schools rivalries
- Messiah College and Wheaton College (Illinois) – These Christian Schools compete frequently for the top Christian as well as Division 3 Soccer Team.
- Indiana Wesleyan University and Taylor University – The schools are separated by less than 15 minutes in rural NE Indiana, and have an intense rivalry in NAIA athletic events.
- Tabor College (Kansas) and Bethel College (Kansas) – These two Mennonite Schools which are only a few miles apart find a friendly rivalry that stems from a denominational split in the 1860s. Their soccer teams compete in the Menno-Cup and Football teams compete in the Menno-Bowl every year.
- Houghton College and Roberts Wesleyan College – These two former conference rivals, located within Western New York in the Genesee River Valley have a heated rivalry with the Men's soccer game being the biggest draw for each school.
- Central Baptist College and Williams Baptist College – These two conference rivals are within the American Midwest Conference.
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